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Subject: Handling materials on television

Handling materials on television

From: Robyn Waymouth <robyn.waymouth>
Date: Friday, July 4, 2003
I could not agree more with Shirley Jones's concerns re the handling
of archival and other historic objects by people who should know
better on TV documentaries.  It is rare to see these items handled
in a professional manner, and occasionally truly dismaying to see
the cavalier attitude taken towards them.  I've often wondered if
it's because I come from a country with such a young archival
heritage that I am awe-struck by the age and quality of artefacts
from the "old world", and consequently so distressed by how I see
them handled, and stored, in TV docos.  As my organisation
approaches its 150th anniversary, I insist on procedures that would
put some prestigious international institutions to shame--the most
recent example I saw on cable TV was in the Vatican Archives, where
the presenter flipped through centuries old volumes and rubbed his
fingers over letters from Galileo.  No-one would get away with that
in "my" archives, even if they're "only" a few decades old.

Robyn Waymouth
Royal Women's Hospital
132 Grattan Street
Carlton  3053
Victoria   Australia
+61 3 9344 2032
Fax: +61 3 9348 1840

                  Conservation DistList Instance 17:10
                   Distributed: Monday, July 7, 2003
                       Message Id: cdl-17-10-002
Received on Friday, 4 July, 2003

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